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This is an IELTS writing task 2 sample answer essay on the topic of children living in the city or the countryside from the general training exam.

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IELTS Essay General Training: Children & the Countryside

Some people believe that children should grow up in the city while others believe the countryside is a better choice.

Discuss both sides and give your opinion.

Many think that children ought to be raised in the city, while others feel a rural setting contributes to a better childhood. In my opinion, though living in the countryside allows children to learn a variety of useful skills, the crucial life skill is learned in the city.

Children who grow up in the countryside tend to have a good grasp of many household jobs. In the countryside, it is more difficult and expensive to bring in a maid or handyman for assistance. As a result, many country kids that live on farms or in remote areas must lend a hand in taking care of the livestock, cooking for the family, and undertaking various small repairs around the home. Children living in the city, in contrast, are more likely to get their food from restaurants and spend more time focused on their homework, not taking on an active engagement with the environment around them. Over time, the gulf in terms of what a child from the countryside from city can do widens.

Nonetheless, the city is better for raising children because of the social skills one can learn there. Children from country often find themselves a product of their unique household and struggle to adapt to different social spheres if they move to the city for work. Those who grow up in the city have to interact with other children from a variety of ethnic and socioeconomic backgrounds on a daily basis. In order to do this, they develop greater empathy for others and improve their conversational skills. They may switch from one group of friends to another or interact with adults with diverse occupations and nationalities, all contributing to their social education. The end result is that they grow up with a far keener understanding of how to communicate and connect with people, a skill of singular value.

In conclusion, children in the country learn a number of practical skills but lag behind in terms of social skills. Parents must weigh many competing priorities but if all factors are equal, they should opt for urban life.

Analysis

1. Many think that children ought to be raised in the city, while others feel a rural setting contributes to a better childhood. 2. In my opinion, though living in the countryside allows children to learn a variety of useful skills, the crucial life skill is learned in the city.

  1. Paraphrase the overall essay topic.
  2. Write a clear opinion and choose a side. Read more about introductions here.

1. Children who grow up in the countryside tend to have a good grasp of many household jobs. 2. In the countryside, it is more difficult and expensive to bring in a maid or handyman for assistance. 3. As a result, many country kids that live on farms or in remote areas must lend a hand in taking care of the livestock, cooking for the family, and undertaking various small repairs around the home. 4. Children living in the city, in contrast, are more likely to get their food from restaurants and spend more time focused on their homework, not taking on an active engagement with the environment around them. 5. Over time, the gulf in terms of what a child from the countryside from city can do widens.

  1. Write a topic sentence with a clear main idea at the end.
  2. Focus on the countryside and include specific details.
  3. Explain the results.
  4. Contrast with city kids.
  5. Conclude with a strong statement.

1. Nonetheless, the city is better for raising children because of the social skills one can learn there. 2. Children from country often find themselves a product of their unique household and struggle to adapt to different social spheres if they move to the city for work. 3. Those who grow up in the city have to interact with other children from a variety of ethnic and socioeconomic backgrounds on a daily basis. 4. In order to do this, they develop greater empathy for others and improve their conversational skills. 5. They may switch from one group of friends to another or interact with adults with diverse occupations and nationalities, all contributing to their social education. 6. The end result is that they grow up with a far keener understanding of how to communicate and connect with people, a skill of singular value.

  1. Write another clear topic sentences with another clear main idea at the end.
  2. Explain your main idea.
  3. Develop it with specific details/examples.
  4. Continue developing the same main idea.
  5. This paragraph should be longer and more detailed because you agree with this side.
  6. State the end results and their importance.

1. In conclusion, children in the country learn a number of practical skills but lag behind in terms of social skills. 2. Parents must weigh many competing priorities but if all factors are equal, they should opt for urban life.

  1. Summarise your main ideas and repeat your opinion.
  2. Add a final thought/detail. Read more about conclusions here.

Vocabulary

What do the words in bold below mean?

Many think that children ought to be raised in the city, while others feel a rural setting contributes to a better childhood. In my opinion, though living in the countryside allows children to learn a variety of useful skills, the crucial life skill is learned in the city.

Children who grow up in the countryside tend to have a good grasp of many household jobs. In the countryside, it is more difficult and expensive to bring in a maid or handyman for assistance. As a result, many country kids that live on farms or in remote areas must lend a hand in taking care of the livestock, cooking for the family, and undertaking various small repairs around the home. Children living in the city, in contrast, are more likely to get their food from restaurants and spend more time focused on their homework, not taking on an active engagement with the environment around them. Over time, the gulf in terms of what a child from the countryside from city can do widens.

Nonetheless, the city is better for raising children because of the social skills one can learn there. Children from country often find themselves a product of their unique household and struggle to adapt to different social spheres if they move to the city for work. Those who grow up in the city have to interact with other children from a variety of ethnic and socioeconomic backgrounds on a daily basis. In order to do this, they develop greater empathy for others and improve their conversational skills. They may switch from one group of friends to another or interact with adults with diverse occupations and nationalities, all contributing to their social education. The end result is that they grow up with a far keener understanding of how to communicate and connect with people, a skill of singular value.

In conclusion, children in the country learn a number of practical skills but lag behind in terms of social skills. Parents must weigh many competing priorities but if all factors are equal, they should opt for urban life.

Answers

ought should

raised grow up

rural setting countryside

contributes to give to

countryside rural areas

variety lots of different types

crucial life skill important ability for life

tend to have usually have

good grasp can do well

household jobs chores, odd jobs

handyman person who fixes things

assistance help

remote areas rural areas, isolated places

lend a hand help out

taking care of looking after

livestock animals on a farm

undertaking doing

repairs fixing

in contrast compared to/however

taking on engaged with

active engagement fully involved with

gulf gap

in terms of as it relates to

widens gets larger

nonetheless regardless

social skills communicating with others

a product of the result of

unique household idiosyncratic home

struggle have trouble

adapt change

social spheres different groups of people

interact with talk to

ethnic race

socioeconomic backgrounds how rich you are

daily basis everyday

greater empathy for others understand others better

conversational skills being able to talk well

switch change

diverse occupations different jobs

nationalities from different countries

end result final outcome

far keener understanding better handle on

communicate talk to

connect understand

singular value inimitable importance

lag behind fall behind

weigh many competing priorities consider different interests

if all factors are equal everything the same

opt choose

urban life city life

Pronunciation

ɔːt 
reɪzd 
ˈrʊərəl ˈsɛtɪŋ 
kənˈtrɪbju(ː)ts tuː 
ˈkʌntrɪˌsaɪd 
vəˈraɪəti 
ˈkruːʃəl laɪf skɪl 
tɛnd tuː hæv 
gʊd grɑːsp 
ˈhaʊshəʊld ʤɒbz
ˈhændɪmən 
əˈsɪstəns
rɪˈməʊt ˈeərɪəz 
lɛnd ə hænd 
ˈteɪkɪŋ keər ɒv 
ˈlaɪvstɒk
ˌʌndəˈteɪkɪŋ 
rɪˈpeəz 
ɪn ˈkɒntrɑːst
ˈteɪkɪŋ ɒn 
ˈæktɪv ɪnˈgeɪʤmənt 
gʌlf 
ɪn tɜːmz ɒv 
ˈwaɪdnz
ˌnʌnðəˈlɛs
ˈsəʊʃəl skɪlz 
ə ˈprɒdʌkt ɒv 
juːˈniːk ˈhaʊshəʊld 
ˈstrʌgl 
əˈdæpt 
ˈsəʊʃəl sfɪəz 
ˌɪntərˈækt wɪð 
ˈɛθnɪk 
ˌsəʊsɪəʊˌɛkəˈnɒmɪk ˈbækgraʊndz 
ˈdeɪli ˈbeɪsɪs
ˈgreɪtər ˈɛmpəθi fɔːr ˈʌðəz 
ˌkɒnvəˈseɪʃənl skɪlz
swɪʧ 
daɪˈvɜːs ˌɒkjʊˈpeɪʃənz 
ˌnæʃəˈnælɪtiz
ɛnd rɪˈzʌlt 
fɑː ˈkiːnər ˌʌndəˈstændɪŋ 
kəˈmjuːnɪkeɪt 
kəˈnɛkt 
ˈsɪŋgjʊlə ˈvæljuː
læg bɪˈhaɪnd 
weɪ ˈmɛni kəmˈpiːtɪŋ praɪˈɒrɪtiz 
ɪf ɔːl ˈfæktəz ɑːr ˈiːkwəl
ɒpt 
ˈɜːbən laɪf

Vocabulary Practice

Remember and fill in the blanks:

Many think that children o_______t to be r________d in the city, while others feel a r______________g c__________________o a better childhood. In my opinion, though living in the c_____________e allows children to learn a v__________y of useful skills, the c______________l is learned in the city.

Children who grow up in the countryside t__________________e a g___________p of many h__________________s. In the countryside, it is more difficult and expensive to bring in a maid or h_____________n for a____________e. As a result, many country kids that live on farms or in r______________s must l_________________d in t______________e of the l_____________k, cooking for the family, and u_______________g various small r______________s around the home. Children living in the city, i______________t, are more likely to get their food from restaurants and spend more time focused on their homework, not t_____________n an a____________________t with the environment around them. Over time, the g_____f i______________f what a child from the countryside from city can do w__________s.

N_____________s, the city is better for raising children because of the s_______________s one can learn there. Children from country often find themselves a________________f their u__________________d and s____________e to a_________t to different s__________________s if they move to the city for work. Those who grow up in the city have to i_________________h other children from a variety of e_________c and s___________________________s on a d_______________s. In order to do this, they develop g___________________________s and improve their c________________________s. They may s_________h from one group of friends to another or interact with adults with d______________________s and n_________________s, all contributing to their social education. The e_______________t is that they grow up with a f_________________________g of how to c___________________e and c___________t with people, a skill of s____________________e.

In conclusion, children in the country learn a number of practical skills but l______________d in terms of social skills. Parents must w_______________________s but i________________________l, they should o___t for u__________________e.

Listening Practice

Learn about the costs of raising kids in New York City:

Reading Practice

Learn here about the benefits of raising kids in the countryside:

http://thestir.cafemom.com/being_a_mom/177008/reasons_raise_kids_country_benefits

Speaking Practice

Answers the following questions from the real IELTS speaking exam:

Where you Live

My sample speaking for these questions is here.

  1. Where do you live at the moment?
  2. What do you like about your neighborhood?
  3. Are there any parks where you live?

Writing Practice

Write about the following related topic and then check with my sample answer:

It is better for children if the whole family including aunts, uncles and so on are involved in a child’s upbringing, rather than just their parents.

To what extent do you agree or disagree?


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